Lafontant, Christophe

Graduation Year: 2001
Category: Special

Christophe Lafontant ’01 has been battling chronic illness his entire life, facing numerous life threatening challenges along the way. At age six, Christophe had a near death experience due to sudden heart failure requiring that a lifesaving pacemaker be implanted. He was then diagnosed with a cardiomyopathy of uncertain etiology. Despite his diagnosis, Christophe excelled academically, holding several leadership positions at Bergen Catholic. He had extensive volunteer experience doing charity work, while simultaneously participating in numerous extracurricular activities. In his junior year, of 2000, he received his first heart transplant. Despite complications after surgery and several readmissions to the hospital, he graduated Bergen Catholic with honors and was accepted to Columbia University in 2001. He faced rejection of his first donor heart in 2004, and after eight months in the Intensive Care Unit. he received his second heart transplant. Now Christophe is an active volunteer of the Child Rife Services at New York Presbyterian Hospital. le hosts an annual heart transplant reunion for patients awaiting transplant, and organizes an annual holiday coy drive for the Children Hospital. He is available for counseling co families and children awaiting heart transplants. Christophe has written an autobiography, 1 Man 3 Hearts 9 Lives, and is also the founder and president of The Christophe Lafontant Foundation for Myofibrillar Myopathies, Inc.